Michael Komape’s mom relives horror in court
Written by Keshia Jansen on November 14, 2017
The mother of five-year-old Michael Komape who drowned in a pit of human waste in 2014 has relived the horror of finding her dead son in her account of the story in court.
Monday marked the first day of the trial between the parents of the boy and the National Department of Basic Education and the Limpopo Department of Education.
Komape’s parents, Rosina and James Komape, are taking legal action against these parties for the death of their son which they believe was caused by a “disregard for his safety.”
Reports assert that Rosina had broken down while retelling the story, upon which the court was briefly adjourned.
Mail & Guardian reports that Rosina testified that she had received a phone call from the principal of Mahlodumela Primary School, informing her that her son was missing on January 20, 2014.
She rushed to school to help search for her son.
Upon her arrival she engaged in conversation with the principal and a few teachers who provided little to no explanation as to how the Grade R learner went missing.
According to News24, Rosina was lead to the school’s toilets by another learner.
When she looked inside of the “rotten” pit toilet, Rosina said that she could only see her son’s hand sticking out of the waste.
“I asked them to pull him out by the hand maybe we can save him. I thought if we pulled him out we could save him,” she said.
But Komape was already dead.
Mail & Guardian notes that according to Rosina, the school had offered her no explanation, apology or condolences.
News24 reports that the family’s legal team, Section 27, will be pursuing a total claim of around R2m.
News24 further states that the Komape family has not received an apology from the government.
In a statement, Section 27 has said: “When parents send their children to school each day we have a right to expect that the school will protect our children and always act in their best interests. We intend to argue that the rights of Michael’s parents were therefore also violated through the school and government’s failure to prevent Michael’s death.”